The team is joined by GuestKats Mirko Brüß, Rosie Burbidge, Nedim Malovic, Frantzeska Papadopolou, Mathilde Pavis, and Eibhlin Vardy
InternKats: Rose Hughes, Ieva Giedrimaite, and Cecilia Sbrolli
SpecialKats: Verónica Rodríguez Arguijo (TechieKat), Hayleigh Bosher (Book Review Editor), and Tian Lu (Asia Correspondent).

Wednesday, 9 November 2005


1 Operation Enduring WIPO

Only four years after the Allied invasion of Afghanistan in Operation Enduring Freedom the government of that country has taken a momentous step towards acceptance within the international community by signing up for ... the WIPO Convention.

Above right: expressions of Afghan folk culture will benefit from WIPO membership

This Convention comes into effect for Afghanistan on 13 December 2005, when the Islamic Republic becomes the Convention's 183rd participating state. The IPKat is, as usual, delighted. Does this mean it's time to put away the Kalashnikovs and whip out the Rolexes, he wonders.

2 Name theft man remains anonymous

The IPKat was fascinated by an item from BBC News about a man who has been sentenced to a term in jail for obtaining a passport by deception after stealing a dead baby's name in Day of the Jackal fashion. The man, who calls himself Christopher Edward Buckingham, refuses to reveal his true identity; he stole his name in 1983 from the birth certificate of a baby who died 20 years earlier.

During police interviews the man said he was Lord Buckingham and had inherited the title on his father's death in 1982. A letterhead bearing the Buckingham coat of arms (left) was found in his possession, but the College of Arms said no-one was currently registered to use the coat of arms, which were last held in the early 1700s.

The IPKat wonders whether it is theoretically possible for a person to abandon or surrender all rights to his own name, these being rights that have some statutory significance, for example the right to trade under one's own name under Council Directive 89/104, Article 6(a). Merpel points out that even anonymous and pseudonymous authors and artists can reassert their right to be known as the creator of their works.

Artist without a name, er, sometimes ... here
Name theft: a Bard comments (find 'trash' and read on)


Guy said...

The most significant revelation from the "Christopher Buckingham" case is that immigration authorities now check names against the Register of Deaths rather than Births. If you wish to assume a name it is easy to obtain a Birth Certificate but virtually impossible to erase a corresponding Death Certificate. Assuming a name for non-criminal purposes is no offence.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if there is now a market in birth certificates? Every so often some gets one for a fictious child and then ...

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